For parents of children with special needs March and April is IEP season when a number of parents have IEP meetings with the schools and the madness truly begins
- What do I include in my child’s IEP?
- Do I need to prepare for war?
- Am I prepared to present my child’s case
- Should I bring an advocate?
- How will I know if the school is following the proper guidelines?
What is an IEP?
The IEP has two general purposes:
- to establish measurable annual goals
- to state the special education, related services and supplementary aids and services that the public agency will provide
When constructing an appropriate educational program for a child with Down syndrome the IEP team considers the child’s involvement and participation in three main areas of school life:
- the general education curriculum,
- extracurricular activities, and
- nonacademic activities.
When the members of a child’s IEP team meet and consider how the child will be involved in and participate in school life, they must be sure that the resulting IEP contains the specific information required by IDEA. Here’s a brief list of what IDEA requires:
- present levels of academic achievement and functional performance,
- annual goals
- child’s progress
- special education and related services and supplementary aids and services
- program modifications or supports for school personnel
- extent, if any, to which the child will not participate with nondisabled children
- individual accommodations
- projected date, frequency, location, and duration of services and modifications
Find additional details of each part at the National Dissemination Center for Children with Disabilities and take a closer look at each compenent.
Download the IEP Binder master packet to help you organize all your school documents in one place for each school year.
Here are 13 articles that will help you get ready for an IEP meeting:
13 Informative IEP articles you need to read
The Down Syndrome Center in Cincinnati has developed an important IEP Toolkit to help parents become informed and collaborative members in the IEP process. Download the toolkit here.
Tips for a Successful IEP meeting Here are some suggestions to help you feel more at ease and able to participate as a full member of the team that plans your child's special education program
Learn more about what Special Education offers your child by reading the Missouri Parent's Guide to Special Education.
Get information about the evaluation process for services in the state of Kansas.
When you disagree with the school district's decision, or you can't agree on a decision with the school district regarding your child's educational plan. What can you do?
Due Process - Parent's Guide
Resolution Meeting - Parent's Guide
Mediation Guide (Spanish)
All About IEPS -- Getting Started Guide